Tuesday, February 15, 2011

We warmly welcome you “Appoline Walkathon Saturday”

Our Lady of Perpetual Succor Church Velachery to Our Lady of Health Vailankanni Shrine Besant Nagar, Adayar

Theme: Reconciliation with God

Diabetes Awareness

Solidarity with Elderly People

(Especially Lift up Mr. A. Irudaya Raj, Retired Teacher who is aging 80 years old on 3rd of August 2011; Ex President of Vincent De’ Paul Society)

Dear Pilgrims,

As you know our Walkathon is this Saturday February 19th. We will meet at “Our Lady of Perpetual Succor” Church on the front steps at 4:00 pm. We will depart no later than 4:30 pm so please be prompt!

A couple of things:

- Please remember to wear bright light blue clothing that can be easily associated with our Mother.

- Dress for rain

- We will not be stopping for brunch so please bring something with you to snack, water, and juice on along the way

- Bring your rosary beads and good waling shoes!

We will be traveling as one group from start to finish so please do not get too far ahead of us or behind us. If you want to join up with us for later portions of our journey please call my cell +91 9790739635 / 9500028414 and I will let you know where we are at.

This will be a great opportunity for us to bond as a group before our pilgrimage. I look forward to walking and praying with you on this our “mini” pilgrimage.

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to call me.

God bless & see you Saturday!

+ Francis Jeyaraj

Sunday, February 13, 2011


Diabetes becomes a companion to many of us in the autumn of our lives. The difference between a person who has looked after this companion well and the one who has ignored it becomes obvious with the passing of age. The one who has ignored the disorder is more likely to be blind, have a kidney failure, a heart attack, a stroke or blood vessel and nerve disorders which can lead to sexual problems and even gangrene and amputation of limbs. So it is important that one looks after this notorious companion well. These days one would see and hear many claims of cure for diabetes, but don't be mislead and waste your money and health on such claims. As of now there is no proven and easily available option of a cure. But one realises that many problems including aging have no cure but can be managed well to have a healthy and comfortable life. So how can we make the best of the situation?

Whatever be the type of diabetes, there are some important guidelines. First is the food control which is now known as 'Medical Nutrition Therapy'. It is not the sweetness that matters but the amount of calories and the Glycemic Index( GI) ( the measure of how high the blood sugar rises when compared to Glucose). The calorie requirement depends on the age, sex, weight, height and the activity of the person. There are several online sites which help one calculate this. If one is overweight or obese, one should reduce 500 – 1000 calories from this so that a gradual weight loss to achieve ideal weight is possible. The food should be wholesome and as per the food pyramid shown

The carbohydrates chosen should be mainly from the low GI category. Foods made of rice flour, maida, tubers like potatoes and products like corn flakes have a high or moderate GI and should be consumed in less quantity. Pulses, Chanadal, vegetables with edible part above the ground have lower GI and should form the larger part of the meal. There are several fruits like apple, orange, guava, berries, cherries etc that are low in GI and should form part of the food. However different people respond to the food in different ways. Therefore it is advisable to check the blood sugar 2 hours after the food to ensure that it is under control and to adjust the quantity and quality of the food. Advices like take extra insulin or tablet and eat what you like can be dangerous. If you want to eat food considered taboo on a special occasion, like cake or halwa on a birthday, the principle of food exchange can be applied. You can avoid another carbohydrate rich food like rice and take a lower calorie amount of the food of your choice, but remember to check your blood sugar 2 hours later with your glucometer to ensure that the blood sugar is in a reasonable range.

The next important factor is exercise. All in the middle age or older and starting on an exercise program for the first time, should consult a doctor and have the necessary tests before starting the exercise program. The exercise should be of moderate intensity and should be tailor made for each depending on the complications one might have and carried out regularly. Please consult your physician or a physical medicine specialist. Regular exercise has benefits more than the sugar control achieved. It improves mobility and stamina, improves blood circulation, decreases chances of falls, controls weight, relaxes and relieves stress, improves sleep which is often decreased in the elderly.

Live a healthy life by not smoking and avoiding secondary smoking. In countries where use of alcohol is permitted, its use should be less than 60ml/day.

Infections are more common in the elderly as the immune system becomes weaker and due to the neuropathy and vasculopathy associated with diabetes of long standing. Some of the common areas are the upper and lower respiratory tract, the urine and the web spaces and pressure areas of feet. Regular inspection and washing of feet with soap and mild antiseptics help in preventing feet infections which can have dangerous consequences.

Loneliness and depression are common especially in those whose spouses have passed away or are staying alone. Emotional disorders upset the control of diabetes and also increase the risk of complications. Keeping oneself active, being involved in service activities, relaxation techniques, yoga, interacting with others of the same age or interest etc. would help. If these are not sufficient then safe medicines and psychotherapy are also available.

Regular monitoring of blood sugar, cholesterol and other lipids, blood pressure and weight are important. Self monitoring of blood sugar with a glucometer helps to ensure proper control and avoidance of high or low blood sugars and complications arising out of the same. The treating physician would also do a number of tests periodically and correct any abnormalities to ensure that you are in the best possible health.

Medicines and insulin advised by the physician should be taken in the correct dose and at the correct time regularly. Treatment is tailor made for each person and one should not try to follow a friend's medicines or dose because his/her diabetes is better controlled.

There are many publications which deal in detail regarding this problem. This year’s health guide of Indian Doctors Forum, Kuwait is on Diabetes. It will be available free for all on the web site www.indiandoctorsforum.org after the 5th of February, 2010. The past years’ health guides are available at http://www.indiandoctorsforum.org/HIndex.aspx .

The American Diabetes Association has made the following recommendations for proper care of diabetes

In conclusion, if one takes care of his/her diabetes well, the aging of the person is almost like someone without diabetes. But if the person does not take care, the quality of life can be compromised and life becomes shorter as the complications of diabetes are more difficult to treat than to prevent.


Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Free Medicine for Blood Cancer!

'Imitinef Mercilet' is a medicine which cures blood cancer.

Its available free of cost at "Adyar Cancer Institute in Chennai".

Cancer Institute in Adyar, Chennai


East Canal Bank Road, Gandhi Nagar


Chennai -600020

Landmark: Near Michael School

Phone: 044-24910754, 044-24911526, 044-22350241

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

U.S. swine flu cases rise, more expected

More than 40 people in five states have been sickened by new strain of swine flu that doctors fear may cause a pandemic, U.S. officials said on Monday, promising more cases to come.

Schools were ordered closed in California and Texas, while nervous investors sent U.S. stock prices tumbling on expectations that the flu outbreak could further undermine the economy, which is struggling in recession.

President Barack Obama said he was monitoring the situation while bad news piled up from southern neighbor Mexico, where up to 149 people have died and more than 1,600 have been infected by the never-before-seen virus.

The U.S. government on Sunday declared the flu strain a public health emergency -- a fresh challenge for the Obama administration, which is still mindful of the damage inflicted on his predecessor George W. Bush over his government's inept handling of Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
No American deaths have been reported and most affected by the virus had light symptoms, recovering fast. But it has popped up in New York, Ohio, Kansas, Texas and California as well as Canada and Europe, raising fears of a pandemic.

"This is obviously a cause for concern and requires a heightened state of alert. But it is not a cause for alarm," Obama told a meeting of the National Academy of Sciences.

In New York City, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said more than 100 sick students at a high school in Queens were being tested and that 45 were confirmed or likely cases of swine flu.

"We believe that there are probably more than 100 cases of swine flu at the school and lab tests are confirming what we have suspected," he told a news conference.

A first case was confirmed in northern California, where a student was found with the virus at a school in a Sacramento suburb. The school was closed. Ten other cases have been confirmed in southern California close to Mexico's border.

Texas, meanwhile, confirmed a third case of swine flu near San Antonio. All three cases involve students at the same school, and Texas officials have closed 14 area schools in an attempt to contain it.

Department of Homeland Security chief Janet Napolitano said inspections were being boosted at U.S. borders and airports, while the national stockpile of antiviral drugs was being activated and should be fully deployed by May 3.

The U.S. State Department urged Americans on Monday to avoid all "nonessential" travel to Mexico over the next three months because of the flu outbreak.

The flu scare comes as the Obama administration seeks to fill a number of senior health vacancies.
Obama's choice for health secretary, Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius, has not yet been approved by the Senate where some Republicans are upset over her support for abortion rights, but Democrats hope Sibelius will get the nod soon.
"There is no time to play politics when it comes to the health and safety of our citizens," Democratic Representative Rosa DeLauro said in a statement.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention acting director Dr. Richard Besser said the rising New York total represented testing of the affected students, not ongoing transmission.
But he said officials expect to see more cases and possibly more severe infections as surveillance intensifies.
"I wouldn't rest on the fact that we have only seen cases in this country that are less severe. I would expect that the spectrum of disease would expand," Besser told a briefing.
"This virus is acting like a flu virus and flu viruses spread from person to person," he said.
The White House took pains to emphasize that one person -- Obama himself -- was not at risk.
While a Mexican museum director who guided Obama during his recent April 17-18 trip to the country subsequently died, the White House issued a statement on Monday saying this death was due to pre-existing condition and not swine flu.
Besser said officials did not believe any of the existing flu vaccines would be effective against the new strain. The CDC has been starting the groundwork to make a new vaccine.

The virus is widely being called swine flu although it has components of classic avian, human and swine flu viruses and has not actually been seen in pigs.
Despite that, six countries banned the import of meat and pork products from some parts of the United States, the U.S. Trade Representative's office said, saying the bans "do not appear to be based on scientific evidence."
The meat bans -- which followed a warning by the European Union health chief against travelers visiting areas hit by swine flu -- looked likely to fuel concern of wider U.S. economic impact from the flu outbreak
White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said the U.S. Treasury was looking at potential fallout, although it was too early to put any numbers on it.
U.S. lawmakers plan to hold hearings this week to examine the federal government's response to the flu outbreak with some health experts critical of the government's long-term preparations for possible pandemics.

Swine flu Questions and Answers: What it is, symptoms, how to fight it?

Q: What is swine flu?
A: It's a common respiratory disease in pigs that doesn't usually spread to people. When pigs catch this flu, many get quite sick, and 1% to 4% die, according to the World Health Organization. In the past, people have sometimes caught swine flu if they worked directly with pigs.

Q: How is this swine flu virus different?
A: This strain appears to be a subtype not seen before in humans or pigs, with genetic material from pigs, bird and humans, according to WHO. Unlike most cases of swine flu, this one can spread from person to person, said Richard Besser, the acting director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, at a White House press conference Sunday. One of the confirmed cases in the USA caught swine flu from a spouse, who had been to Mexico.

Q: How do you catch it?
A: You can get sick if someone coughs near you, because the disease spreads through microscopic respiratory droplets, says Martin Blaser, former president of the Infectious Disease Society of America. You also can get sick from touching a surface where droplets have landed, then touching your mouth or eyes. Although people are contagious before they show symptoms, they are most likely to spread the virus when they're coughing, Blaser says.

Q: Were pigs the carriers of this virus?
A: It's closer to say that pigs were the mixing bowl for this virus. Birds can't pass bird flu to people. But pigs are uniquely susceptible to getting flu viruses that infect birds. Experts have long worried that a pig would catch a bird strain of the flu and then the virus would mutate inside the pig to a form that could also infect other mammals. That may be what happened in this case. Pigs can also be infected with more than one influenza virus at a time, allowing the viruses to share genes, called "genetic reassortment," creating new and potentially much more virulent viruses.

Q: Can you catch swine flu from eating pork?
A: No, according to WHO. Pigs coming in to slaughter facilities are monitored for flu symptoms, and those that are ill are not allowed to enter the food supply. Cooking also kills the virus. People who work with pigs, however, can catch the virus. The Department of Agriculture is conducting tests to confirm that the food supply is safe, said Janet Napolitano, secretary of the Department of Homeland Security.

Q: What are the symptoms?
A: The most common symptoms are fever, fatigue, lack of appetite and coughing, although some people also develop a runny nose, sore throat, vomiting or diarrhea, according to the CDC.

Q: What should you do if you have these symptoms?
A: Stay home from work or school, to avoid spreading your illness to other people, Besser said. Don't get on an airplane. People should call their doctors to ask about the best treatment, but should not simply show up at a clinic or hospital that is unprepared for their arrival.

Q: How can people protect themselves?
A: As always, people should wash their hands frequently, Besser said. In the past, the CDC has said there isn't conclusive evidence to support using face masks. Surgical masks are designed to prevent the wearer from spreading germs, but may also catch large respiratory droplets if someone sneezes nearby. In a 2007 statement, the CDC said these masks could be worn if someone needs to go to a crowded place, such as a grocery store, for a short time. N95 respirator masks filter out 95% of particles to prevent the wearer from breathing them in. These must be fitted properly around the nose to create a seal, so they can make breathing difficult.

Q: What is the incubation period for the flu?
A: In most cases, infected people develop symptoms within one to four days.

Q: Should people who have recently traveled to Mexico be concerned?
A: Only if they have flulike symptoms, such as a fever, cough and body aches, or in some cases vomiting, says Thomas Tallman, head of emergency preparedness at the Cleveland Clinic. If it has been more than a week since you returned from Mexico and you aren't sick, you can relax.

Q: What should you do if you have flu symptoms?
A: Stay home. Don't go to work, school or travel until you've been free of symptoms for a day, Blaser says. If possible, ask in advance about working from home in case you or family members become ill. A small number of people are at higher risk, because they have been to Mexico — or have had close contact with someone who has.
Those who don't fit that profile probably have an ordinary flu, Tallman says. Most people can recover from the flu just fine at home. Stay in bed, drink lots of fluids and take acetaminophen for pain. Wash your hands frequently, and cover your mouth when you cough.

Q: When should you call the doctor?
A: If you're sick and have been to Mexico, or have close contact with someone who has, call your doctor for advice about being tested and treated, Tallman says. Patients should see a doctor if they have trouble breathing, vomit uncontrollably, become delirious or have other types of "altered mental status," says Mary Klotman, chief of infectious diseases at New York's Mount Sinai Medical Center.

Q: When should you use a mask?
A: There are two main types of masks.
• Simple surgical masks are designed to keep germs in — to prevent someone from coughing and spreading the virus.
• N95 respirator masks are designed to keep germs out and protect people from breathing in the flu virus.

In a 2007 statement, however, the CDC said there isn't definitive evidence that masks will keep people from getting sick. That's partly because respirators must be carefully fitted over the nose and mouth to ensure a tight seal, which can make it harder to breathe. Because the number of U.S. cases is still relatively small, there's no need right now for the general public to cover up.

Q: Is there a vaccine against swine flu?
A: No, but government scientists could try to create one, according to the CDC. "We've identified the virus," Besser said. "Should we decide to manufacture a vaccine, we can work toward that goal very quickly." CDC scientists don't know if this year's flu vaccine offers any protection.

Q: What about antivirals? Can they prevent swine flu?
A: This strain of swine flu does appear sensitive to the antiviral drugs Relenza and Tamiflu, but not to amantadine, or Symmetrel, and rimantadine, or Flumadine, Besser said. With normal seasonal flus, if taken within the first 48 hours after symptoms appear, antivirals can help people recover a day or two sooner. Doctors sometimes prescribe antivirals to household members of people with the flu to prevent them from getting sick.

Q: What does it mean for the government to declare a public health emergency?
A: While the declaration "sounds more severe than it is," Napolitano said Sunday, it will free up funds and allow health officials to use medications and tests that aren't normally used. The government also issued a public health declaration during recent floods in North Dakota and Minnesota, she said, and noted that the government often issues such declarations when hurricanes are approaching. The federal government is also releasing 25% of the 50 million doses of antiviral medications in the nation's Strategic National Stockpile, Napolitano said. The Department of Defense is also making 7 million doses available.

READERS: What do you want to know about swine flu?
Leave questions below and check back for answers:

Swine Flu

With global anxiety spreading even faster than the new swine flu — and a vaccine still months away — health authorities are struggling to reduce the impact of an outbreak that can't be contained by simply shutting borders.
The world has no vaccine to prevent infection but U.S. health officials aim to have a key ingredient for one ready in early May, the big step that vaccine manufacturers are awaiting. But even if the World Health Organization ordered up emergency vaccine supplies — and that decision hasn't been made yet — it would take at least two more months to produce the initial shots needed for human safety testing.
"We're working together at 100 miles an hour to get material that will be useful," Dr. Jesse Goodman, who oversees the Food and Drug Administration's swine flu work, told The Associated Press.
Meanwhile, health authorities are preparing for the worst. "I fully expect we will see deaths from this infection," said Dr. Richard Besser, acting director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The U.S. is shipping to states not only enough anti-flu medication for 11 million people, but also masks, hospital supplies and flu test kits. President Barack Obama asked Congress for $1.5 billion in emergency funds to help build more drug stockpiles and monitor future cases, as well as help international efforts to avoid a full-fledged pandemic.
"It's a very serious possibility, but it is still too early to say that this is inevitable," the WHO's flu chief, Dr. Keiji Fukuda, told a telephone news conference.
Cuba and Argentina banned flights to Mexico, where swine flu is suspected of killing more than 150 people and sickening well over 2,000. In a bit of good news, Mexico's health secretary, Jose Cordova, late Tuesday called the death toll there "more or less stable."
Mexico City, one of the world's largest cities, has taken drastic steps to curb the virus' spread, starting with shutting down schools and on Tuesday expanding closures to gyms and swimming pools and even telling restaurants to limit service to takeout. People who venture out tend to wear masks in hopes of protection.
The number of confirmed swine flu cases in the United States rose to 66 in six states, with 45 in New York, 11 in California, six in Texas, two in Kansas and one each in Indiana and Ohio, but cities and states suspected more. In New York, the city's health commissioner said "many hundreds" of schoolchildren were ill at a school where some students had confirmed cases.
New Zealand, Australia, Israel, Britain, Germany, Spain and Canada have also reported cases.
But only in Mexico so far are there confirmed deaths, and scientists remain baffled as to why.
The WHO argues against closing borders to stem the spread, and the U.S. — although checking arriving travelers for the ill who may need care — agrees it's too late for that tactic.
"Sealing a border as an approach to containment is something that has been discussed and it was our planning assumption should an outbreak of a new strain of influenza occur overseas. We had plans for trying to swoop in and knockout or quench an outbreak if it were occurring far from our borders. That's not the case here," Besser told a telephone briefing of Nevada-based health providers and reporters. "The idea of trying to limit the spread to Mexico is not realistic or at all possible."
"Border controls do not work. Travel restrictions do not work," WHO spokesman Gregory Hartl said in Geneva, recalling the SARS epidemic earlier in the decade that killed 774 people, mostly in Asia, and slowed the global economy.
Authorities sought to keep the crisis in context: Flu deaths are common around the world. In the U.S. alone, the CDC says about 36,000 people a year die of flu-related causes. Still, the CDC calls the new strain a combination of pig, bird and human viruses for which people may have limited natural immunity.
Hence the need for a vaccine. Using samples of the flu taken from people who fell ill in Mexico and the U.S., scientists are engineering a strain that could trigger the immune system without causing illness. The hope is to get that ingredient — called a "reference strain" in vaccine jargon — to manufacturers around the second week of May, so they can begin their own laborious production work, said CDC's Dr. Ruben Donis, who is leading that effort.
Vaccine manufacturers are just beginning production for next winter's regular influenza vaccine, which protects against three human flu strains. The WHO wants them to stay with that course for now — it won't call for mass production of a swine flu vaccine unless the outbreak worsens globally. But sometimes new flu strains pop up briefly at the end of one flu season and go away only to re-emerge the next fall, and at the very least there should be a vaccine in time for next winter's flu season, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the National Institutes of Health's infectious diseases chief, said Tuesday.
"Right now it's moving very rapidly," he said of the vaccine development.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Diet tips that save the planet

Looking to shed a few pounds before the summer? Losing weight is not only great for your health -- it's also good for the environment.

The following suggestions will help reduce your waistline and your impact on the planet.

· Eat fresh fruits, vegetables, and other real foods. High amounts of salt, sugar, and other unhealthy ingredients can hide in packaged foods. In fact, some flavored yogurts can contain more sugar than ice cream. Manufacturing, packaging, and transporting processed foods to the store typically requires a large amount of energy and resources.
· Stay away from high-fructose corn syrup. It can make you fat and is linked to diabetes. Massive amounts of fertilizers are used to grow corn, and these chemicals are eroding America's soil and polluting the Gulf of Mexico.
· Choose lean protein such as chicken, eggs, sustainable seafood, and legumes. It's not high in saturated fat and fills you up so you're not looking for your next meal too quickly. Red meat, in particular, takes a huge toll on the environment. Raising livestock is one of the most significant contributors to a long list of environmental problems from climate change to deforestation to water pollution.
· Replace high-calorie soft drinks with filtered tap water. Obviously, anything you can do to cut calories is a win for your body. How does it benefit the earth? Fewer resources are needed to make bottles and cans and ship them to stores. It also puts less pressure on landfills.

· Cook your own meals instead of eating out at restaurants. It's harder to control portions when you go out to eat, and you have no control over whether healthy ingredients are used to prepare your meal. Besides, restaurants end up wasting a lot of perfectly good food.

· Walk and bike more. Exercise is a major component of any healthy weight loss program. You'll burn more calories and less gas by leaving your car at home.
· Don't deprive yourself. Satisfy your sweet tooth with a little bit of fair-trade dark chocolate. Studies show that the antioxidants present in dark chocolate can help lower blood pressure.